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Early Reading Intervention for Non-English Speaking Students

We have a wonderful reading interventionist who is out on sick leave until January. I have the privilege of meeting with her groups until she can return. The first group of kindergarten students I meet with every day are new to school in America and they’re learning...

That Thing You Do! Carolyn Davis–It Only Takes One Book

I am thrilled today that Carolyn Davis is guest blogging for That Thing You Do! Carolyn and I met on social media first and then I had the pleasure of meeting her in person at a local conference. There was an immediate connection due to Carolyn's deep love for readers...

Shared Text Experiences

Many a parent or guardian has experienced it. The repeated demands from a tiny tyrant to read a beloved book. Beloved by the child. Most likely not so beloved by the adult—after having read it a bazillion times. That one practice alone (repeatedly reading the same...

Powerful Educator Tools for Fighting Tyranny of the Urgent: Part I

In my position as an instructional coach, I excel at identifying (and articulating) problems. I’m even pretty good at laying out workable solutions. I really stink at execution. Let me rephrase that. I’ve not been wildly successfully at facilitating widespread...

Letter To A Teacher–First Days of School for a Newcomer

Dear Mrs. Katz, My friend is being kind enough to write this letter to you today. My English is not so good yet, but I must write to say thank you. Thank you for helping my daughter in her first days in your class. She tells me you have been so kind to her and for...

Kids Are People, Too. Creating a Caring Classroom.

I’ll never forget walking my daughter to school on her first day as a kindergarten student. We lived in Austria at the time and the public kindergarten she was to attend was only a few blocks from our home. I felt especially anxious because Paige didn’t speak German...

How I Spent My Summer Break: The Teacher Version

Teachers spend their summers resting, relaxing, playing, traveling. They also spend the summer weeks learning, reading, planning and reflecting. I read. I listened. I read some more. But I got schooled, too. A family with three children asked if I would tutor their...

Inquiry and Integrated Content for Our Youngest Readers

My last year of high school I graduated early in February so I could join my parents who were living in England at the time. The freedom I experienced as an eighteen year old traveling around the British Isles after dad’s job took our family there for two years...

Supporting Emerging Readers and Writers

  We wring our hands and lament that so many of our students are not learning to read and write. We wonder and debate. We study data and brainstorm solutions. We talk and plan and work and stay late and plan some more. I’ve been accused on more than one occasion...

Word Work or Word Play? Phonological Awareness and Phonics

When our daughter, Paige, was five she fell while standing on a chair. She hit her head and was unconscious for what I'm sure was only a few minutes, but to this newb parent felt like an eternity. We were living in Austria at the time and our pediatrician had...